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COM 597, Fall 2011 – Reading Guide Questions for August 31

For Ford, Preface and Pages 1-21

1. In a nutshell, what's the distinction Ford makes among courteous, manipulative, and personalized service?

2. Why is nonverbal so important for service providers?  What characteristic does she say is most important about verbal and nonverbal messages?  From your experience on both sides of service provider-customer/client transactions, how important is that?

3. What's this content-relationship distinction she's talking about?  What does she say is its relationship to the verbal-nonverbal distinction?

4. What does she say is the relationship between context and goals?  What are examples of that from places you've worked and places you've been a customer/client?

5. What's the difference between linear and transactional models of communication?  How do interactions with customers/clients illustrate the benefits of understanding communication as a transaction?

6. What are "service scripts?"  What role do they serve?  Can they ever be detrimental to good service?

7.  So, again, what does Ford mean by courteous service?

8. What is phatic speech?  Psychologically, what makes it so important?  What are the limitations on its usefulness?  How have you been instructed to use/not use phatic speech at places where you work?

9. What is nonverbal immediacy?  What are examples of it from where you've worked and where you've been a customer/client?  Is it really as powerful as it's cracked up to be?

10. What are the four strategies she identifies for creating verbal immediacy?  From your experience, do they really work?

11. What does she say customers do to show that your attempts at rapport building aren't working?  To foster rapport?   To demand rapport?  As a service provider, how do you respond?


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